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Director Known For Making Compelling Portraits Of Complicated Women Is Working On A Netflix Documentary About Britney Spears

Director Erin Lee Carr, who has explored figures like Michelle Carter and Gypsy Rose Blanchard, is now focusing on the pop icon.

Erin Lee Carr Britney Spears

A director known for her work depicting the stories of complicated women has been working on a new documentary about Britney Spears for Netflix. 

Erin Lee Carr had already started working on the project before “Framing Britney Spears” — the New York Times-created documentary available on FX and Hulu debuted on Feb. 5, Bloomberg reports.

It wouldn’t be the first time that Netflix and Hulu created documentaries about the same topic around the same time. As Bloomberg points out, in 2019 both streaming services released documentaries about the infamous Fyre Festival within just days of one another.

Netflix has not immediately responded to Oxygen.com’s request for comment on the upcoming Spears documentary. Carr told Oxygen.com that she wouldn't discussing the project at this time. A release date hasn't been announced.

Carr has directed several true crime-centric documentaries that focus on complex women: the 2017 HBO film "Mommy Dead and Dearest” told the story of Gypsy Rose Blanchard, a young woman who killed her mother in 2015 after experiencing years of alleged medical abuse; the 2019 documentary "I Love You, Now Die: The Commonwealth v. Michelle Carter" explored the case of Michelle Carter, who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter in Massachusetts after, at age 17, encouraging her boyfriend Conrad Roy III, to kill himself in 2014. Carr also directed the 2020 Netflix documentary “How to Fix a Drug Scandal,which focuses on crime lab technicians Sonja Farak and Annie Dookhan, who were caught shockingly mishandling drug evidence in their separate labs in 2013 and 2012, respectively.

While the women at the center of Carr’s previous works operated on the wrong side of the law, she painted complicated and often sympathetic portraits of them. While Carter was depicted in the media as manipulative and evil, Carr's documentary won praise for showing all sides of Carter’s plight, including her own struggles with loneliness and mental health issues and an allegedly toxic relationship with Roy. 

Carr told Oxygen.com last year that she planned to continue focusing on female subjects.

“It’s important that women make films about women,” she said. “Just as we need to have directors of color make stories about people of color and there has been movement in that arena. This is something that I just feel very drawn to.”

"Framing Britney Spears" explores how Spears, who was thrust into stardom when she was just a child, was both hyper-sexualized and heavily scrutinized by many segments of the media and public, who seemingly delighted in her apparent mental health crisis in 2007. It questions the fairness of the resulting conservatorship under which she's lived since and it dives into the misogyny she's faced throughout her career.

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